National Conference (NC) Spokesman Junaid Azim Mattu has said that BJP’s Nitin Gadkari’s rant against NC and the State of J&K was “half-baked and grossly ill-informed”.
According to a statement issued to KNS, while stating that Nitin Gadkari and his boss Narendra Modi should brush up on their basics about the Constitutional Law of the land and the Constitution of India, Mattu said “BJP leaders have repeatedly exhibited their astronomical ignorance about the difference between State Subjects Laws and Article 370. This dangerous misrepresentation of facts and distortion of legality and reality is aimed at intimidating the people of Jammu and Kashmir and polarizing people within the State for political gains”, Mattu said.
Mattu said that J&K’s State Subject Laws are different from Article 370 of the Indian Constitution. “J&K’s State Subject Laws have been there even before India’s independence and have nothing to do with Article 370. J&K is not the only place that has laws that bar outsiders to buy and own property within the particular State. The purpose of such laws is to protect the demographic character and profile of these States. We will not allow BJP to distort facts to intimidate the people of J&K”, Mattu said.
Mattu added that Article 370 was the constitutional bridge between J&K and the rest of the country and BJP’s shocking display of deliberate ignorance about the Constitution of India was ridiculous. “Article 370 limits the power of the Parliament of India to legislate for J&K and is a result of a negotiated accession. BJP cannot so much so touch Article 370 without re-opening the accession debate. All noises that BJP is making on Article 370 are attempts at encouraging dangerous misinformation as part of an elaborate agenda of divisive politics”, Mattu said.
Mattu lashed out at BJP for displaying the moral audacity to lecture Kashmiris about secularism and democracy. “Where was BJP’s high-morality on democracy in 2002 when its Chief Minister didn’t bother to accept moral responsibility for an unprecedented carnage that engulfed the State for three whole days?” Mattu asked. “Their sermons about dynastic politics are hypocritical. What about Akali Dal in Punjab which is BJP’s ally and has Prakash Singh Badal as the Chief Minister and his family members holding key positions in the government? What about Varun Gandhi? A few months back Narendra Modi addressed a political rally in Chattisgarh and lectured on dynastic politics by stating that had Raman Singh, the Bharatiya Janata Party Chief Minister, been a Congress politician, his son would have received a party ticket. Last month the same party gave a ticket to Raman Singh’s son Abhishek under the leadership of the same Narendra Modi. Isn’t this the most apt example of Modi’s hypocrisy? What about Shiv Sena? Doesn’t BJP see dynastic politics in Shiv Sena?, Mattu asked.
Drawing a few of the many more examples to highlight BJP’s inherent hypocrisy, Mattu pointed out at the examples of Anurag Thakur from Himachal Pradesh who is the son of former Chief Minister Prem Kumar Dhumal and Dushant Singh from Rajasthan who is the son of Chief Minister Vasundha Raje Scindia. “BJP hypocrisy and lies are so brazen that one cursory look at reality punctures their balloon of rhetoric”, Mattu said.
Stating that NC was a party that thrived on robust internal democracy, Junaid Mattu said “National Conference was a party that had risen from the grassroots level in J&K. We have rendered thousands of sacrifices to protect democracy and secularism in the State. The very idea of a BJP leader coming and giving us half-baked, ill-informed lectures on democracy is unacceptable and laughable”.
Mattu said that Omar Abdullah is an iconic and popular leader of J&K who derives his strength and leadership from the grassroots and not from his ancestry. “Omar Abdullah is one of the very few leaders in the country who BJP and Narendra Modi have failed to bully and intimidate. And this is precisely the reason for such rants from BJP leaders at this stage”, Mattu added.